Teaching Toughness

2. As parents, we are the visual example. We should live by the words we preach, stay committed to a project, and not complain about the unfair advantages of others. If parents teach kids to be winners, but also to learn how to lose with grace, this world will be a nicer place.

3. We should acknowledge a child’s accomplishments, and use tact when discussing the need for improvement. It’s OK to remind a child to be more alert while playing the outfield or to observe closely the conductor while playing an instrument. We should be engaged but not smothering. For example, “That was a great catch.” And some time later, “It looked like you were a little surprised when the ball came to you. Have you memorized all of your plays? I can help you with that.”

4. As parents, we must keep a long perspective and use the activity as a teaching point. “Remember how you felt when the coach took you out after you walked two batters in a row? You wanted to prove you could get it right, but he didn’t give you the chance. How do you think your sister felt when she was trying to explain what happened, and you wouldn’t even let her talk?” The lessons kids experience are the ones they will remember. By seizing the moment, we can help them engrain the lesson.

There are only a few “actual moments” in a person’s life when the pressure is high and one’s reaction is truly critical. Most of life is lived within the soft margins of “close enough” decisions, but now and then one needs to draw on wit and imagination to make a snap call.

The better we know ourselves and what we are capable of, the more likely will be a favorable outcome.

Ron Ciancutti is the Purchasing Manager for Cleveland Metroparks. He is not on Facebook, but he can be reached at rdc@clevelandmetroparks.com.

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Related posts:

  1. Teaching The Basics
  2. Teaching From The Top
  3. Teaching Tennis
  4. Teaching Sports Skills
  5. Clues

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